There has been a lot of drama at Badminton this weekend. This is the first time since 2019 that this event has run and due to so many events being cancelled over the past few years due to Covid, many horses and riders haven’t seen a 5* course in a while.
Badminton Cross Country Phase
The Cross Country was possibly a bit harder than any of us expected with some top combinations having some nasty falls early on. I am pleased to say that the news so far is that Nicola Wilson is in a stable condition after her fall. But the trickiness of the course really shook up the leader board, confirming that this isn’t a dressage competition.
Top 10 After Cross Country
|1||Laura Collett||London 52||21|
|2 (Up 4)||Oliver Townend||Swallow Springs||25.7|
|3 (Up 5)||Oliver Townend||Ballaghmor Class||25.9|
|4 (Up 6)||Rosalind Canter||Lordships Graffalo||26|
|5 (Up 1)||Piggy March||Vanir Kamira||26.1|
|6 (Up 6)||Rosalind Canter||Allstar B||27.6|
|7 (Up 20)||Jonelle Price||Classic Moet||31.4|
|8 (Down 5)||Kitty King||Vendredi Biats||32.8|
|9 (Up 6)||William Fox-Pitt||Little Fire||33.3|
|10 (Up 27)||William Fox-Pitt||Oratorio||33.4|
There was a bit of controversy with Oliver Townend and Swallow Springs. Early on they had trouble where Swallow Springs completely misread the jump. Swallow Springs just about managed to stay on his feet and somehow Oliver managed to stay on. But there was quite a bit of debate as to whether A) they jumped the jump and B) whether it counted as a horse fall or not. He was eliminated after completing the course but this was removed a little while later. It once again raised the question of are we against Oliver Townend as a sport? He does seem to get viewed in a much harsher lens than other riders.
Soladoun & Lordships Graffalo
Starting with the only ex racehorse competing at Badminton this year, Soladoun. He had a great round across the cross country with Elizabeth Power. They went clear, just picking up 6.4 time penalties. This meant they crept up 18 places, finishing the Cross Country in 20th position. Unfortunately, they didn’t present to the final horse inspection this morning, so I’m guessing he isn’t feeling quite right this morning. This means we don’t have an ex racehorse completing Badminton this year.
Lordships Graffalo was just incredible. His first time at this level. Only a 10 year old. He was one of only 6 horses to be clear within the time. This meant he was sitting in 4th place heading into the show jumping, which is an incredibly exciting result for him!
Show Jumping and Final Badminton Results
It was a challenging show jumping round with only a handful of clears and even less within the time. This meant quite a lot of changes to the leader board. But the final results were:
|1||Laura Collett||London 52||21.4|
|2 (Up 2)||Rosalind Canter||Lordships Graffalo||26|
|3 (Down 1)||Oliver Townend||Swallow Springs||29.7|
|4 (Up 1)||Piggy March||Vanir Kamira||30.1|
|5 (Down 2)||Oliver Townend||Ballaghmor Class||30.3|
|6 (Up 5)||David Doel||Galileo Nieuwmoed||33.6|
|7 (Up 1)||Kitty King||Vendredi Biats||34|
|8 (Up 5)||Austin O’Connor||Colorado Blue||36.3|
|9 (Up 6)||Tamra Smith||Mai Baum||36.5|
|10 (Up 8)||Richard Jones||Alfies Clover||38.4|
It really was a great Badminton horse Trials after a 2 year break. Laura Collett was a well deserving winner, unlucky to be just over the time in the show jumping to not quite finish on their very low dressage score. Despite this, their performance was record breaking, the lowest ever Badminton score!
Lordships Graffalo A Future Champion
Of course I have a soft spot for this horse after working with him as a yearling. But he has done more than I think any of us ever imagined. I already mentioned he was just 1 of 6 horses to go clear within the time in the cross country phase and just 1 of 4 horses to go clear within the time in the Show Jumping. He was the only horse to go clear within the time in both phases, making him the only horse to finish on his dressage score. We were all quite excited last year when EquiRatings named him as their highest rated 9 year old of the year. His performance this week has only strengthened this.
EquiRatings did a great post about him earlier this week looking at some other top 9 year olds and what they have achieved since. For their database (2008-2022) Lordships Graffalo has the lowest finishing penalty score of any 10 year old and the only 10 year old to perform better than him was NZB Land Vision who won badminton in 2011 with Mark Todd. He really is one to watch in the future!
Last Updated on 08/05/2022